According to research from the Baymard Institute, 69% of all eCommerce visitors abandon their shopping cart. While the research identified a number of reasons why online shoppers may abandon their cart, one of the most common cause of abandonment (28%) was a “too long / complicated checkout process”.
In order to remedy this (and, in part due to the increased use of mobile devices with tiny virtual keyboards), minimising the number of keystrokes a user has to type has become something of a priority for managers of eCommerce systems and other websites. If a site requires a new user to type in all information, such as their whole address, abandonment becomes much more likely than on sites that predict information based on the minimum possible keystrokes.
In relation to address validation, this has the additional benefit of ensuring that the information is accurately captured and correctly formatted. The more information the user has to type (into their phone), the greater the chance of them mis-typing, resulting in uncontactable customers, un-deliverable goods and increased costs.
Postcode Address File (PAF®)
For many years in the UK, ‘postcode lookup’ was the standard, making use of the Royal Mail Postcode Address File (PAF®). This contains 1.8 million UK postcodes covering over 29 million residential and business addresses. Updated with more than 3000 address changes every day, the PAF is used by 37 thousand businesses. When the user types in a postcode they are presented with a list of all the addresses to which that postcode applies. There are, however, a number of limitations to this system:
I don’t know my postcode
This is a fairly fundamental limitation. Many people don’t know, or can’t remember their postcode, in which case they will have to enter the entire address manually.
How many addresses?
According to the Royal Mail, the average number of properties per postcode is 15, however, the range quoted is between one and a hundred. If you were to include multiple residences, such as university accommodation, the number increases dramatically. The University of Warwick, for example, has 5,800 addresses. This makes picking from a list trickier than you would expect.
The address is overseas
Postcode lookup using PAF only works for the UK. In the increasingly globalised business climate, this can be a limitation.
Here at Data8, PAF is just one source of address capture and validation. In order to provide a complete solution, we combine a range of sources to provide a much higher level of service.
data8 predictive address™ – The Total Solution
Not Yet Built
There are approximately 100,000 new properties annually in the UK
Capture accurate address details for customers that are moving in to properties under construction or in the planning stage by combining the Not Yet Built File which contains over 500,000 records, with PAF.
Reduce fraud and assist with deliveries.
By using combining Royal Mail’s Multiple Residence with PAF®, you can identify individual dwellings and businesses within multiple occupancy buildings that share a front door such as shared entry addresses, self-contained flats, and university or nurses accommodation amongst others.
The file contains more than 750,000 records, with 2,000 records added every month. Multiple Residence can help reduce fraud by verifying and identifying addresses behind a delivery point and the knowledge of how many households / units are connected to each delivery point can be a big benefit particularly if you are involved with deliveries.
Multiple Residence data is vital for any business with customers in densely populated areas.
AddressBase, from Ordinance Survey, allows you to link additional information about a property to a single address and to locate it on a map. For example, when a house is divided into six flats, you need to know about all of the different households within; their lifestyles and the services they use.
It includes historical addresses to identify fraudulent use of a residence that no longer exists, and provides alternative addresses (e.g. that 21 Croxton Road and Primrose Cottage are the same place).
Converting addresses into geographic coordinates, such as latitude and longitude to allow markers on a map
Our UK geocoding web service provides accurate locations for postcodes, towns, streets or other full or partial address details With data from Ordinance Survey we can provide locations to the nearest metre for postcodes in England, Wales and Scotland. We also continue to provide cover for Northern Ireland and Isle of Man with locations accurate to 100 metres.
This service provides you with a quick and powerful tool to direct customers to their nearest store, office or other location. It can either be integrated directly into your business applications, or we have a fully functional application ready to be used in your website.
How it works
Data8’s predictive address technology extends the usefulness of the PAF by combining it with other sources, including international coverage in over 250 countries, to provide the complete solution for address validation.
Search ahead technology allows users to just start typing the address, or postcode, and uses advanced fuzzy matching technology to search the available sources and predict possible addresses. In many cases this can be achieved in a few keystrokes. Once the correct address is identified, other information such as map position can be combined.
Other services can be appended, such as our geodemographic profiling facility data8 geodem™, or electoral roll information, can be used to append additional information, based on the address.
Postcode Lookup or data8 address validation™?
Which solution works best for you? The table below highlights the features of each option.
|data8 predictive address™||Postcode Lookup|
|International coverage in over 250 countries and territories||✔|
|Advanced fuzzy matching technology||✔|
|Search ahead technology||✔|
|Full address gained from a postcode||✔||✔|
|Address data validated at entry||✔||✔|
|Address data formatted at entry||✔||✔|
|Free technical support||✔||✔|
|Easy and quick integration in web, CRM, eCommerce platforms, ePoS||✔||✔|
|Reliable UK data sources (UK PAF)||✔||✔|
|Bespoke integration available||✔||✔|
 Data8 Multiple Residency service